Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The pleasures of bargaining!

Last weekend I went grocery shopping to Spencer's. After buying a week's worth of rations and veggies, I realised we were still short of potatoes and tomatoes, staple food items at our place. So on my way back, I stopped at the local sabziwalla to check out his produce.

Now there are 2 reasons why I do not buy from the local sabziwalla usually.

1. I feel supermarkets buy good and hygenic foodstuff, while the local guy's veggies are dirty and rotten many times.
2. Supermarkets are able to give a larger variety at a better price usually, thanks to bulk purchase.

But at times when the supermarts are out of something, I have no way out, but to go to the local guy. Now at the supermarket, one cannot bargain. I dont usually bargain with the sabziwalla either, cuz I think "What does a few rupees here or there matter to me?" But this time, after being looted last time by paying 5 bucks for a measly little bunch of coriander, I was ready for some mandavli. I took out all the change I had in my wallet (Rs. 14.50), and marched down to the sabziwalla. I chose 1/2 kg each of tomatoes and potatoes, and after paying 12 bucks for them, I was eyeing some lemons. He was selling them at Re 1 apiece. Not only did I make him give me 3 lemons, I also took a handful of good green chillies for free!

And then I walked home, with my head held high, for I managed to weasel out 50p and 5 free chillies from the sabzi guy. Serves him right for giving me the rotten coriander for 5 bucks!! :)

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Corridor of Life

This is an idea I have had in my mind for months. In fact it was born in one of the boring classes of 6th term at IIMA, where I was trying to keep myself busy to stay awake, and ended up with a rough sketch of my concept of "Life is like a Corridor!" Read on!

Life is like a long corridor full of doors. What lies behind the doors is... life as we know it.

There are doors of relationships, that you enter when you enter relationships. Some doors you open automatically, for relationships you enter automatically, like when you are born, you are a son or daughter. Some doors open up only at certain times, like doors for mothers or fathers. Some doors may not open for someone at all, like door of husband or wife, or sibling.

There are doors of age, of your being. Like when you are born, you enter the door of childhood. But soon you exit it and enter the door to youth. And then middle age, and if you are lucky, old age! These doors are enterd chronologically, and once exited, cannot be visited again. However, doors like those of marriage, parenthood etc can be visited again and again!

There are doors of events, namely birth, marriage and death. Some doors one has to enter, like birth or death; while other doors are optional, like the door of marriage or love or even parenthood.

There are doors of experience, like the door you enter when you first experience making love. Doors which lead you to violence. Doors which lead you to ecstacy. Doors for both good and bad, good and evil, happiness and sadness. These are doors which all of us enter at some point in life, some of us enter more then others. Some get out, some stay behind. Sometimes we enter of our own free will, sometimes someone leads us to it. We can enter multiple doors at the same time, like being in different places at the same time. That is, having many emtions, experiences, and situations at the same time.

The corridor starts with the door of birth, which you may only exit, to move on in life, but you cant enter again in that lifetime. The corridor finishes with the last door of death. Wherever we are, when time comes we need to enter this door, and we cannot exit it. There may be times in life when we are unable to exit the door of birth, and exit staright to death, like an abortion or miscarriage or still - born situation. And sometimes we visit teh door of death, but not quite enter it, when we have near death experiences.

Having said about all the doors, I believe onec the death door is entered, there is no going back. However, some people have the faith that the death door connects to the birth door, it takes time to reach there, but you do. And for some, there is a door beyond death - Nirvana.

I dont know how well I have been able to elucidate my idea, if I have made any sense to you. As far as I am concerned, I have been through many doors, and waiting for many of them to enter. Of course there are doors I would like to enter, but will have to. And I will, when time comes.